Students at other universities are anxious about the idea of a ban on alcohol inside residences, after Stellenbosch University (SU) announced a temporary ban.
Students raised their concerns after the announcement, with some asking for more initiatives to help reduce alcohol abuse.
DA Students’ Organisation provincial chairperson Leighton September said the idea could lessen the alcohol consumption on campus and reduce the drinking culture.
“However, banning alcohol does not mean that it would not be used”. Students can still go to bars and clubs in town to have a drink,” he said.
SA Students’ Congress provincial chairperson Buyile Matiwane said institutions must provide enough recreational activities for students.
“Alcohol is not the problem, but rather, the abuse of alcohol.
“It is a lazy, knee-jerk response from institutions to ban the use of alcohol in residences. Institutions should rather look at innovative ways of teaching/encouraging students for responsible drinking,” Matiwane said.
Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) spokesperson Lauren Kansley said its campuses had always been alcohol-free and the misuse of liquor on campus was viewed in a serious light.
“If a student is reported for misusing alcohol, they could face a disciplinary hearing and possible expulsion.
“Alcohol is allowed on campus for special bashes, but this only happens with the appropriate liquor licences in place and with special approval from the vice-chancellor.”
UCT spokesperson Elijah Moholola said according to the university’s handbook, a student cannot take liquor into, or keep or consume liquor in any student housing unit without the permission of the warden and the house committee.
Gasant Abarder, UWC spokesperson, said the university had a long-standing policy which states that no alcohol is allowed at any of the residences. “This is strictly enforced.”
He said The Barn – a bar on campus, was a privately run facility which allowed access to alcohol since it was not permitted to be consumed in residences or anywhere else on campus.
“The facility does not allow alcohol to leave its premises. They have their own security,” Abarder said.
In an attempt to tackle the issue of alcohol abuse among students, SU senior director: student affairs, Dr Choice Makhetha said the SU rectorate decided that the trade of alcohol in residences and their “clubs” would be abolished.
The temporary ban came into effect on January 1, 2020. In a brief to students, the university said the decision was reached because of rising concern for students.
“In light of this decision, the residence rules that form the community guidelines of the living and learning communities at SU have to be reviewed, in particular the sections of the residence rules that deal with the use of alcohol in residences.
“This has to be done in order to codify the decision that the rectorate has taken, and will take place over the next few months, to be concluded mid-2020.”